How to Become a Cosmetologist in Nebraska

If you would like to become licensed through the Nebraska Board of Cosmetology, follow these simple steps:

Enter Zip:
Enroll in Cosmetology School
Apply for Licensure by Examination
Pass the Examination
Maintain Your Nebraska Cosmetologist License Through Continuing Education
Find Work in Nebraska’s Beauty Industry

Cosmetology schools in Nebraska make it a point to stay on the leading edge of the latest trends in hair, skin and nail care. A recent article in Scottsbluff Star Herald shed light on how these schools not only teach hair styling techniques, but they also teach basic mathematical concepts such as degrees of elevation and angles for determining the length and sweep of a haircut. Additionally, nail art design has increased in popularity.

Many cosmetology schools in Nebraska give students the opportunity to style and cut hair at a low cost to clients – or sometimes no cost at all. As a cosmetology student in Nebraska, this will give you a great opportunity to practice your skills on real-life clients, but this responsibility should not be taken lightly.



Step 1. Enroll in Cosmetology School

In order to become a cosmetologist in Nebraska, your training must consist of a minimum of 2011 hours and 2000 credits in a Board-approved cosmetology school or apprentice salon. You must be at least 17 years old and have a high school education before enrolling in a cosmetology program in Nebraska.

Board-approved programs are found in the following cities:

  • Omaha
  • Norfolk
  • Beatrice
  • Hastings
  • Lincoln
  • Grand Island
  • Kearney
  • Fremont
  • North Platte

Your 2100 hours of training, whether in a cosmetology school or a salon, will combine textbook/lecture education with practical education. You will get a chance to practice the knowledge and skills you learn via textbook/lecture on real-life clients and mannequins.

Examples of class titles and/or skills that you will learn during cosmetology training include:

  • Income strategies
  • Salon marketing
  • Guest service raining
  • Men’s hair care services
  • Skin care techniques
  • Hair design
  • Texture services
  • Coloring
  • Hair sculpture



Step 2. Apply for Licensure by Examination

Once you have completed your cosmetology training, you are ready to apply for Nebraska licensure by examination. Use the Cosmetologist Application by Examination and complete it in its entirety. Include a check or money order payable to Licensure Unit for the licensure fees. The fee that you must enclose varies with the month that your license will be issued (details are included in the application).

Other documentation that you must submit with your application includes:

  • Copy of documentation that you are at least 17 years old (driver’s license, school transcript, birth certificate, government ID card, etc)
  • Copy of a document indicating that you are a citizen or lawful permanent resident (passport, birth certificate, etc)
  • Copy of your high school diploma or GED
  • Copy of the diploma you received when you competed your cosmetology program
  • Have your cosmetology school or apprentice salon complete Attachment 1 of the application
  • Documents if you have ever been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor (see application for necessary documents)
  • Documents of any other credentials you have held in any jurisdiction in environmental services, health services or health-related services (this must be submitted to the Licensure Unit directly by the credentialing agency)
  • Copies of any disciplinary action taken against your credential

Submit everything to State of Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Division of Public Health –Licensure Unit, P.O. Box 94986, Lincoln, NE 68509-4986.

When the Unit has received and processed your application and attachments, you will be notified by mail of your examination eligibility and forwarded information to schedule the exam.



Step 3. Pass the Examination

When you have received confirmation of your eligibility to take he exam from the Licensure Unit, you may go online to the website listed in your notice to schedule your exam. Nebraska requires cosmetology licensure applicants to pass a computerized written exam and a Jurisprudence Exam.

Written Exam

Nebraska’s cosmetology exam is administered by LaserGrade/PSI. Nebraska’s testing centers are located in:

  • Sidney
  • Omaha
  • Kearney

Nebraska uses the NIC Cosmetology Theory Examination Series 58. The fee to take the exam is $53, payable online to LaserGrade/PSI when you schedule your exam.

The test is 90 minutes in duration and consists of questions on nail care/services, skin care/services, hair care/services, and scientific concepts related to cosmetology.

You must score 75 or better to pass the written exam, and will receive an unofficial score report when you complete the exam. Official scores will be mailed to your residence after the exam along with your Nebraska cosmetology license.

Jurisprudence Exam

As a cosmetologist candidate in Nebraska, you must also pass the state’s Jurisprudence Exam. This exam on state law and rules and regulations relating to cosmetology may be taken online. You must print the completed test and send it to the following address for grading:

State of Nebraska Licensure Unit, 301 Centennial Mall South (P.O. Box 94986), Lincoln, NE 68509. You must score 75 or better to pass the exam.

When you have passed both the written exam and Jurisprudence Exam, the licensure unit will mail your Nebraska cosmetology license to you.



Step 4. Maintain Your Nebraska Cosmetologist License Through Continuing Education

Congratulations! You are now a licensed cosmetologist in Nebraska!

Your license renews on December 31 of even years. You may renew your license online or via paper application by visiting this link.

You are expected to complete eight hours of continuing education during each licensure period. A list of Board-approved continuing education providers may be found here.

Examples of continuing education courses offered for Nebraska cosmetologists include:

  • Eyelash extension
  • Color solutions
  • Hair regrowth
  • Texture cut and style
  • Body sugaring hair removal
  • Anti-aging and acne skin care
  • Moroccan oil
  • All about eyes
  • Introduction to essential foiling



Step 5. Find Work in Nebraska’s Beauty Industry

Nebraska is full of job opportunities for licensed cosmetologists. Whether you choose to work for someone else, to rent a chair in someone else’s salon, or to open your own salon, you have many options available to you.

Cosmetologists do not only work in salons in Nebraska, however. Department stores, spas, health care facilities, fitness facilities and corporations are just a few of the places licensed cosmetologists in Nebraska may be found working.

A few examples of work settings for Nebraska’s cosmetologists include:

  • Family Fun Cutz – Omaha
  • Great Clips – Beatrice, Lincoln and Omaha
  • ULTA Salon – Omaha, Lincoln and Papillion
  • Cost Cutters- Kearney
  • Life Time Fitness – Omaha
  • SmartStyle – Bellevue
  • L’oreal SalonCentric- Omaha
  • JC Penney – Norfolk

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